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Mothers, Lovers, and Others
The Short Stories of Julio Cortazar
Mothers, Lovers, and Others
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Cynthia Schmidt-Cruz - Author
SUNY series in Latin American and Iberian Thought and Culture
Price: $95.00 
Hardcover - 209 pages
Release Date: December 2003
ISBN10: 0-7914-5955-1
ISBN13: 978-0-7914-5955-3

Price: $32.95 
Paperback - 209 pages
Release Date: January 2006
ISBN10: 0-7914-5956-X
ISBN13: 978-0-7914-5956-0



Provocative reappraisal of the portrayal of women in Julio Cortázar's short stories.

Using feminist revisions of psychoanalytic thought and cultural studies, Mothers, Lovers, and Others examines the pervasive role of the conception of the feminine in the short stories of Argentine writer Julio Cortázar (1914–1984). Contending that his obsession with the mother is the source of Cortázar's uneasiness with femininity, Cynthia Schmidt-Cruz traces an evolution in his relationship to female space, from a convoluted and defensive posture to a more open and tolerant stance, paralleling his increasing political commitment. Schmidt-Cruz explores the role of gender in Cortázar's quest to reconcile his divided allegiance to Argentina and France, and his denunciation of the atrocities of the Argentine military dictatorship.

"No one doubts that Cortázar is one of the most important Latin American authors of the twentieth century. This book is extremely important because it is part of the new readings about Cortázar that are finally tearing to shreds the veil shrouding his fiction. The topic addresses questions central to the field of feminist criticism and shows how much can be added to our perception of literature when the tools devised by feminism are judiciously and intelligently deployed. No other book on Cortázar gives a better understanding of his female characters or of his evolving attitude toward them. Written in the wake of feminist and gender studies, this book increases our realization of the crucial role played by gender in areas such as national identity and political discourse." — René Prieto, author of Body of Writing: Figuring Desire in Spanish American Literature

"Julio Cortázar is one of the most significant writers of the last century. A psychoanalytic approach that appraises the development of his female characters in the light of his personal experience and transformations, without incurring on facile identifications, is extremely central to Cortázar study." — Hortensia R. Morell, Temple University

Cynthia Schmidt-Cruz is Associate Professor of Spanish and Director of the Latin American Studies Program at the University of Delaware. She is the coauthor (with Frank Sedwick) of Conversation in Spanish: Points of Departure, Sixth Edition.

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Table of Contents


Chronology of Cortazar's Stories

1. Introduction: Cortazar's Female Space and the Configuration of Masculinity

Cortazar's Psychological Obsessions: What's Mom Got to Do with It?
It's Not Me, It's My Dream: The Unconscious and the Unraveling of Sexual Identity
The Evolution of Female Space: A Cautious Rapprochement

2. The Personal and Cultural Context

Cortazar and Women, Cortazar on Women, Cortazar's Women
Values Associated with Motherhood

3. The Omnipotent Mother

"La salud de los enfermos": Caring Exquisitely for Mama
"Cartas de mama": Fantasies of Persecution

4. Mothers and Lovers

A Freudian Fallacy
"Historias que me cuento": The Walter Mitty Complex
"Deshoras": Desperately Seeking Sara
Mother's Darling
Love Affairs: Frustration, Betrayal, Violence

5. Defiant Women, or Coming to Terms with Difference

"Cambio de luces": What Does Luciana Want?

6. "Euridice, Argentina": Women and the Guilty Expatriate

The Family Allegory
"El otro cielo": Dispassionate Patriotism
"Cartas de mama": Mama in the Empty House
"Recortes de prensa": Rage and Impotence during the Proceso
"Diario para un cuento": Anabel/Eurydice Shows Orpheus
What a Cad He Was

7. Women and the "Dirty War"

A War Waged on Women's Bodies
"Pesadillas": The Anguished Patria
"Graffiti": The Female Body--Erotic Object versus Cautionary Message
The Politicization of Motherhood
"Recortes de prensa": Frustrated Writers, Juxtaposed Mothers, Guilty Revenge
"Nuevo elogio de la locura": Motherhood, Madness, and Cortazar's "zona sagrada"




Works by Cortazar
Interviews of Cortazar
Studies of Cortazar's Works and Life
General Bibliography


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